Brain-Boosting Exercises To Stimulate Your Dog’s Mental Performance

brain boosting mental exercises for dogs

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Part of a dog’s well being is having a healthy body. A healthy body does not only mean a strong physical structure but highly stimulated mind as well.

Aside from giving your furry pal the right kind of food, it helps to let them do brain-boosting exercises.

There are a lot of brain-boosting programs available everywhere. Some may even offer a progressive comprehensive program priced accordingly.

However, for dog owners who go for a more “do it yourself” approach, they may find these simple exercises handy.

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Treat Conquest

One of the best ways to stimulate your canine buddy’s brain is through the use of his senses.

Because unlike humans that often use hands along with the eyes in searching for things, dogs rely mainly on their sense of smell along with their sense of sight.

Treat conquest is a simple game that requires dogs to find the treats hidden around the house by using their sense of smell.

In finding a place to hide the treat, a dog owner must consider the dog’s capacity to locate and how long the activity has been done.

The owner may begin by hiding the treat while the dog is looking.

When the dog gets familiar with the game, the owner may try to hide the treat in hard to reach places gradually.


A clicker is not actually a game but a positive reinforcement tool that helps the dog to realize when what he is doing pleases his master or not.

Because it sometimes takes a dog owner to pay attribute to a dog’s accomplishment, the furry friend may get confused on which part of his deed pleased the owner.

The clicker when introduced to a dog gives him a signal when he is doing something good and that a reward or a treat is about to come.

A clicker may be a small piece of metal or plastic that produces a clicking sound.

It may take some time and amount of patience before the dog gets familiar with the clicker but once he gets used to it, the result is better than praising his achievements verbally.

A dog owner must make sure the consistency of the clicker used and not to replace it afterward so as not to mislead the canine buddy.

Obstacle Treat

Using the treat as bait, the dog owner may use a towel or a piece of cloth. In the dog’s presence, hide the treat inside the towel and tie it up.

The knot should be just enough so the dog can untie easily but not too loose giving the furry friend a bit of a challenge before getting his treat.

The goal is to make the dog exercise perseverance in trying to get the treat and patience in untying the knots.

Once the dog opens up the towel, a clicker may be used to signal his victory or simple praise from the master will let him know he has done it well.

There are a bunch of other brains stimulating exercises that can be done at home.

What is important is that the owner must be mindful of the capacities and limitations of the dog.

It is also necessary to keep watch and acknowledge every milestone that the canine pal achieves.

Shell game

Shell game to boost dog brain

The shell game is a simple brain boosting exercise for dogs, but one that can be really challenging for both canines and owners.

It’s a fun game that dogs will immediately love because of the treat involved with it.

To play this game, you’d need two to three plastic opaque cups and a dog treat.

Turning the cups over, have your dog watch as you place a treat under one of the cups.

Afterwards, give your dog the signal to come over, turn the cup where the treat is and give it to them.

Practice doing this around a few times until your dog gets the gist of the game.

Once you think your dog has enough practice, you can alternate the cup in which you’ll place the treat under.

Have your dog watch and select the correct cup.

If your dog gets it right, then they will be rewarded with the treat.

This way, you help your dog do serious thinking, challenge their mental ability, and sharpen their visual tracking skills.

Errand training

Dogs are very smart animals who can be trained to become your helpers whenever you need to do something.

Unlike other type of brain boosting exercises for dogs, errand training is not really easy and can become challenging aside from time consuming.

On the other hand, it can become a great way for you and your dog to bond stronger and avoid them being restless.

You can train your dog to get the hose when you need to wash your car, open the mailbox and get the mails, carry a basket with you when you go to the market, put his own toys in a box or stand guard when you bring your little one to the park.

Just like any other game and canine exercise, errand training requires visual stimulation where you show your dog what to do and give them a treat when they do it right.

Errand training is not only brain stimulating for dogs, it also help them relax and enjoy sleep without being disturbed easily.

Play fetch

dog training

When it comes to your dogs, playing fetch seems like very simple and easy.

Instead of just having them pick a ball or a Frisbee, give them a variety of new toys so they wouldn’t get bored of fetching the same things for you.

Just like children, your dog gets excited too when they get to fetch new and colorful toys for you.

Continue to keep the excitement going for them by bringing new toys to keep them entertained.

Drop it

Dog training to Drop it

Once your dog knows how to play the game of fetch, the next brain boosting exercise you can give them is the drop it game.

This game helps discipline your dog and obey you as you give them commands.

To start this game, all you need to do is to let your dog fetch his toys and start with the command “drop it.”

Once your dog masters this command, the next thing you should train him for is to drop his toys in a particular location like a toy box or basket.

Again, make sure to give your dogs a treat when they do things right.

Remember to build up the number of toys they are able to fetch and drop on a box or basket.

Give your dogs a reward after successfully dropping two toys, three and so on, and so forth.

Eventually, reward your dogs only when they are able to put every toy away and you’ll see them running around the house cleaning up every toy to get their tasty treat.

There are a bunch of other brains stimulating exercises that can be done at home.

What is important is that the owner must be mindful of the capacities and limitations of the dog.

It is also necessary to keep watch and acknowledge every milestone that your canine pal achieves.